Wednesday Nights

$40.00 SOLD OUT



Click Here to Download the Cycling Guide – 3 MB
Click Here to Download the 2017 Risk Management Plan – 76.4 KB
Rides begin on Wednesday May 17th at 6pm and continue for twelve weeks. For each riders insurance protection, purchase of an Ontario Cycling Association Provincial Citizen Permit is mandatory. Cost is $40.00 (Normally $56) available at:!/events/bluewater-wednesday-night-rides

When booking click Provincial Citizen Race Permit ($56) and a $16.00 credit will be given at checkout….don’t worry it is just a title you will not be racing. For insurance coverage info Registered Wednesday night riders will receive the following:

    • Custom Tee shirt to first 125 that sign up donated by Ironworks Gym Click Here to View
    • 2 free computrainer rides & further rides discounted to $5 each donated by OnEdge
    • 15% parts discount at Blackwell Cycle
    • 10% new bikes discount at Blackwell Cycle
    • 12 weekly guided training rides
    • 12 weekly talks re safety, nutrition, bike repair etc.

All registered riders who wish to take part will meet at Blackwell Cycle on Blackwell Rd. All rides will be assisted and guided. Rules of the Road will apply. 5 Group Levels will be created each week A short talk will be given each week by a guest speaker between 6pm 6:15pm with the ride commencing PROMPTLY AT 6:15. Talks will help educate riders on The Rules of the Road, riding skills and cycling etiquette, nutrition, motivation, basic bike maintenance and tire changing, stretching, fitness, injury avoidance, basic bike fitting etc.

LATTE – For those who would like to ride easy but want to experience riding in small groups with like-minded people while increasing fitness and biking skills. 20+ 16-20
CAPPUCCINO – You have had some experience of group rides but would like more group saddle time while riding at a moderate pace.  20+ 20-24
MOCHA – The Mocha group will follow the same routes as the Cappuccino group but at a faster pace. 20+ 24-28
AMERICANO – This is the group for you if you are comfortable with group riding and have a good level of fitness but want to improve your cycling skills.  30+ 28-32
ESPRESSO – We ride consistently and will sometimes share the workload at the front… ideal for riders that want to try a faster pace and drafting while knowing that there is a “no drop” policy.  30+  32+


Group riding, by definition, is a collective experience requiring a certain degree of harmony and cooperation between the participating cyclists. In many ways it’s like a group dance where the better everyone understands the various steps the safer and more fun the whole ride experience is. In this case the steps are not difficult but what’s essential is that everyone is doing the same dance at the same time. And that’s what this article is about. We at BIGF would like to define how we ride so everyone is on the same page.

  1. As per Ontario Cycling Association (OCA) rules all participants must hold a Provincial Citizen Permit or be a declared guest of an OCA/UCI affiliated club.
  2. You need a bike in good working order.
  3. Be self-sufficient i.e. have a small saddlebag with spare tube, tire levers CO2 or pump. Do not rely on others for flat repairs, (guides will help) water, food etc. Bring a charged cell phone, ID, emergency information and the proper clothing for the ride.
  4. You need to have a certain minimal level of fitness. Members should be able to ride for 1.0 hrs at 16 km/hr.
  5. You should have a basic understanding of group riding skills. If you don’t we offer beginner group riding skill sessions in the early rides with the slowest group.
  6. You need to be familiar with and willing to abide by our ride guidelines, be courteous and respectful of other cyclists and road users.
  7. Children under the age of 16 must be accompanied by a parent and have theappropriate minimum level of ability as per #4


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  1. When you arrive, please check in and show your OCA membership and chose the group you will be riding with according to speed.
  2. We will have 5 different group levels. Depending on number of participants groups may be split. Ideally we try to have groups of 10-12.
  3. Groups are defined by speed and distance. Experience has shown that to have a group of cyclists who have similar fitness, and goals in mind results in a more enjoyable, safer and harmonious ride. So think about whether you want to go hard or easy and pick the appropriate group.
  4. We attempt to have all groups led by a designated Ride Leader / Guide. These volunteers know the route, carry a cell phone and have been instructed on how we ride. Most importantly the Ride Leader explains all this information to the group before they depart. Repetition of our ride practices week after week is key to riders absorbing the information. It’s all about everyone being on the same page.
  5. Groups should be at least 100 metres apart on the road to allow other vehicular traffic to pass safely.
  6. Groups will depart the meeting area allowing reasonable time intervals. We ask that the riders do not try to catch up to the groups ahead as this causes confusion and creates groups that are too big (remember, 10-12 people per group). We usually have all the groups ride predominantly the same route so that riders who have miscalculated their fitness can easily drift back to the group following.
  7. Rides will be based on time and not distance with the first evening’s ride being approximately one hour. Time will be added each week as the skills of the group permit
  8. Routes will be posted weekly via BIGF and Blackwell Cycle Facebook page.
  9. Rides will plan to use lesser traveled roads where possible and practical.
  10. Rides will not be held if lightning is present and will be cancelled if lightning is sighted.
  11. Riders will not be left behind during a BIG Ride unless they first confirm with the Group Guide that they are detaching from the group.
  12. Bicycle helmets must be worn at all times while participating in any BIG Ride and other
    protective equipment is strongly encouraged (e.g., gloves, eye wear).
  13. Riders are responsible for bringing sufficient liquids and food, as required
  14. Riders cannot be under the influence of any drug or beverage product that could impair their riding judgment while on a BIG Ride.
  15. Any and every accident on a BIG Ride shall be immediately reported to a guide or a staff member of Blackwell Cycle.
  16. Riders will receive help to assist them to become comfortable and proficient with group riding.


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The Basic Ride Formation: “Tight and to the Right”

Our goal as a disciplined and well organized ride group is to share the enjoyment of the road with our members as well as the general public. We are well aware that we have to share the road with motorized vehicles. We therefore travel in a single pace line we call “Tight and to the Right”. The idea is to take our pace line position as far right as is safely possible. Our goal is to accommodate the approaching driver with a clear view forward so that they make a clean and safe pass as soon as possible.

In order for us to accomplish this, we as a group, are required to ride in a formation that is ‘tight’ and well disciplined. By ‘tight’ we mean that the cyclists are to be 2-3ft apart front to back (wheel to wheel). The group’s primary goal is to maintain the cohesion of this formation. It is the individual discipline of each rider to hold their position in a smooth predictable manner and not create gaps or overlaps which jeopardize the ride quality. Stay together.

Communication is absolutely critical to the success of all group rides. It starts right from the beginning even before the group leaves: The rider needs to communicate with their group or Ride Leader to determine which group and pace of ride they want. Riders at the front need to call out road hazards and traffic situations. Riders at the back need to call out cars approaching from the back. The bottom line is that the quality and safety of the ride is dependent on frequent and clear communications between all the riders. Never assume  everyone in the group knows a car is approaching or that the group is turning. Everything that can affect the group needs to be called out.

One final but important point regarding communication. We have Ride Leaders who are there to try to maintain the quality of the ride but the best way to keep us all at our best is when we all communicate best ride practices. So if you see someone riding inappropriately ie overlapping wheels, surging off the front we all should say something. Be polite but make it known that that was not proper. We all own these rides and if someone does something dangerous it’s in everyone’s best interest to correct it. So don’t let bad habits go unaddressed. Say something before it’s too late. We all have a responsibility to the riders around us. When we are at the front we are responsible to the riders behind to provide a smooth and steady pull and to point out hazards. When we are at the back we are responsible to call out cars coming from the back and to maintain the integrity of the group by not allowing

When being approached by an emergency vehicle (fire truck, ambulance, or police) with its lights and siren activated, we are required under the HTA to pull over our group and stop. It doesn’t matter if the emergency vehicle is approaching from the front or behind. Act fast, but act safely and in control: when a siren is heard or lights are seen, immediately shout out to your group to pull over and stop. A siren or lights means stop now but not a panic stop, a controlled and safe stop.


  1. Ride smooth and steady. Avoid sudden or abrupt movements or over reactions to potholes etc. DO NOT OVERLAP WHEELS WITH THE RIDER IN FRONT OF YOU.
  2. When you are close to the front of the group on a short descents pedal to keep the pace up. Remember there are riders drafting behind you who will have to brake if you don’t keep the pace up.
  3. When picking your group be realistic. It’s better to be comfortable in your group then maxed out all the time. You can always move to a different group the following week.
  4. Group rides are not races. We are there to support each other.
  5. When you see someone committing a ride foul politely say something. We are all responsible for the quality of our rides.
  6. If you get a flat give a loud shout out right away or there is a good chance the pack will ride away without even noticing you. If the group knows they will stop and help you fix it quickly
  7. Do not yell obscenities to motorists or get into arguments with the police. We ask that cyclists not engage in any kind of confrontation with drivers or police officers. This includes hand gestures involving the centre digit. We are working hard to maintain the reputation of BIGF and all cyclists in general. If words have to be exchanged let the Group Ride Leader do the talking. (Feel free to video the exchange if you feel the individual is dangerous.) It’s important to understand that when you ride with the group and when you wear our jersey you become an Ambassador for both the group and all cyclists in general. Nothing meaningful gets resolved on the road.

This is not a competitive ride and any and all competition will be discouraged
Keep Safe, have fun and thanks for riding with BIGF


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May 17 – Week 1
Talk given by Ken MacAlpine
Outline of ride plan and guest speakers for the next 12 weeks.
Q&A .. riders divided into compatible groups.

May 24 – Week 2
Talk given by Anita Trusler.
Group riding safety.

May 31 – Week 3
Talk given by James Grant (Blackwell Cycle)
bike maintenance and tire changing

June 7 – Week 4
Talk give by Sarnia Police
Safety and cycling

June 14 – Week 5
Talk given by Cam Davis (Ironworks).. weights can help prevent cycling injuries

June 21 – Week 6
Talk given by TBD

June 28 – Week 7
Talk given by Dick Felton… Nutrition on the ride

July 5 – Week 8
Talk given by TBD

July 12– Week 9
Talk given by Jon Palumbo … your first large participation event

July 19 – Week 10
Talk given by Glen Madisson …riding experiences

July 26 – Week 11
Talk given by… Anita Trusler … ride etiquette

Aug 2 – Week 12
Talk given by Ken MacAlpine.. Wrap up

Order of speakers and who is speaking may change but there will always be a talk


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